Time for the year-end post! These are sometimes cheesy, but I enjoy looking back at the last 12 months and doing a little summary before moving on to the new year. Also, since I’m a numbers nerd, I like to look back at previous years (see 2012, 2013, & 2014) to compare stats like mileage and races. So, without further ado…
Best race experience: Santa Rosa Marathon. Maybe I’ll eventually run a faster marathon, but I doubt I will ever have such a magical, perfect race experience like I did at SRM. Everything came together so well, from logistics, to race conditions, to executing my race strategy. I negative split by 11 minutes to PR by the same margin. I’ll never forget getting to the mile 20 marker with a smile and actually being EXCITED to run the last 6. The only thing missing was not having a support crew at the finish line to celebrate with. That would’ve been the icing on the cake!
Best run: I loved the group run at Pleasanton Ridge. We had a great turn out that day with 9 ladies, and I felt really strong on the hills. Then, we had brunch, which is always awesome.
Best new piece of gear: Altra The One2 shoes. They’re heinous to look at (think clown bowling shoes) and the name is quite silly, but I love these shoes. They’re what I’ve been looking for for so long — a road shoe with zero drop, just a bit of cushion, wide toe box, and lightweight.
Best piece of running advice received: “Stop thinking and just run as best as you can.” — The Gypsy Runner, before the Santa Rosa Marathon.
Most inspirational runner: The one runner whose story I was really moved by this year was Gunhild Swanson, the 70-year-old who made the cut-off at Western States 100-mile race with just 6 seconds to spare. In her post-race interview with iRunFar, she comes across as extremely likable, down-to-earth, and humble. I’m sure I’m not the only one who would be happy to be half as fit as Gunhild when I’m 70 years old!
If you could sum up your year in a couple of words, what would they be? Enjoy the running. PRs are nice, and sometimes you want to work hard at getting faster, but in the end, running is a hobby for me. If I’m not enjoying it, then what’s the point?
And now for the numbers:
Miles (through 12/29; I may run a few tomorrow): 1,224
- (1) 5Ks
- (2) 10Ks
- (1) 12K
- (1) 15K
- (1) 10 miler
- (4) half marathons – 2 road, 2 trail
- (2) marathons – 1 road, 1 trail
- (1) marathon relay
- (1) 50K
Miles raced: ~184
- First night trail race: PCTR Night Sweats
- First marathon relay: Oakland Marathon Relay with the Crazy Cat Ladies
- First (and probably last) Bay to Breakers
- First trail marathon: Canyon Meadows
- First ultramarathon: Big Basin 50K
PRs: (not counting new distances with automatic PRs)
– 4:21:52 (9:59/mile) at Santa Rosa Marathon. Bettered previous PR by 10 min 47 sec.
Age Group Awards: 2 — 1st (out of 12) at Brazen Dirty Dozen 10K, and 2nd (out of 2) at the Canyon Meadows Trail Marathon.
When I look back on 2015, I see a return to fitness (after coming back from injury in 2014) and a year of new, fun experiences. I tried some different distances and prioritized running with friends. I raised money for charity while training for my first ultramarathon. I qualified for the Marathon Maniacs.
I’ve gotten a bit complacent since Santa Rosa, but I prefer to think of myself as more relaxed. 😉 Heading into 2016, I hope to get faster at the 5K. My goal is to PR at the Oakland 5K on March 20th.
Here’s to a happy and healthy new year!